Course Code
PSCI 0810 / HIST 0810 / PHIL 0810
Course Type
Seminars
Subject Credit
Course Availability

Each seminar runs only subject to sufficient student demand. The purpose of this course is to show how thinkers have analysed and justified the role and existence of the state, and to consider various theories of government. Based on the study of primary sources in translation, it also examines the philosophical and historical backgrounds of the various thinkers and how these affect their political thought. This term starts with Greek thought, and ends with the use made of classical political thought by Machiavelli.

Sample topics:

  1. Plato, The Republic
  2. Aristotle, Politics
  3. Cicero, On Duties (On Obligations)
  4. The influence of the Bible on medieval political thought
  5. Augustine, City of God
  6. Carolingian political thought
  7. John of Salisbury, Policraticus
  8. Aquinas’s political thought
  9. Dante, On Monarchy
  10. Machiavelli, The Discourses